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Wake Up and Notice

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Gerard didn't actually notice that he was a girl when he woke up or anything. It's not that he could go without his dick for a long time without noticing, but he hadn't slept very well and really all he wanted was some coffee. Gerard functions after the first cup of coffee, so he would have noticed a lot sooner if it wasn't for all the people in the way when he was trying to get to the coffeemaker.

They were all talking and some of them were talking to him, but it wasn't until he drained half the cup that he noticed that two of them were girls and one of them was Mikey. It wasn't until he finished the cup that Gerard realized the other crucial pieces of information, which were: 1. Mikey was a girl too, and 2. Mikey was calling one of the girls Ray. Mikey, while a girl, was still definitely Mikey, Gerard was sure, because it just wasn't possible to know someone as well as Gerard knew Mikey and not recognize them. He recognized the way Mikey stood and the way he mumbled and anyway, Mikey looked almost exactly the same, except for the tits. The other chicks he wasn't so sure about, so he asked.

"Thanks for noticing," Ray said shrilly, and that was definitely Ray's voice, and Bob scowled at him and asked him if it looked like a joke to him or something and now he thought about it, he could see that Bob was Bob, even though the voice was different and there was like, no beard at all.

Gerard fumbled his way over to the table and sat down with his second cup of coffee to stare at Bob more. "You have tits," he said, because when he sat down at the table it seemed a lot more obvious than it had from further away, and whoa, Bob didn't just have tits, Bob seriously had tits.

And then Bob blinked slowly and quirked an eyebrow and said, "So do you!" and Ray and Mikey jerked around to look at him and Gerard looked stupidly down at himself, as if someone had just said he spilled beer on his shirt, and holy shit, he did have tits.

His piercing shout was evidently enough to wake Frank, because thirty seconds later he stumbled into the kitchen half-asleep and walked right into the edge of the refrigerator, going, "Gerard? What the fuck?" And it turned out he was the only one without tits.

Everyone just stared at everyone else for a second until Mikey mumbled, "Everyone turned into a girl except you last night, so I guess now there won't be anyone to kill spiders."

***

Gerard thought that everyone was taking the whole chicks thing pretty well except for Frank, who was basically mocking them all at every opportunity. Bob was already hiding from him and it had barely been two days (and one canceled show. The clothes and the drums would have taken care of everything except Ray. There was no disguising that Ray was a chick without, like, a fucking floor-length robe. He was seriously stacked. He was like a six foot tall Playboy model).

But then, Mikey and Bob had always been the type to freak out quietly, and Ray seemed to be bizarrely enjoying himself, and kept making everyone look at his tits. Gerard was probably maybe, kind of, freaking out a little, he thought. He tried to write some lyrics about it but he couldn't figure out how to make symbolism out of it without getting confused about his pronouns, so he watched all the Alien movies and drew a series of sketches of everyday objects in the bus as carnivorous flowers.

"I can't say they because there's really five of us, and besides, it's me too, you know?" Gerard explained to Mikey, but Mikey just handed him a piece of microwave pizza and a coke and said "Uh-huh". Even less sympathetic than usual.

"You need a metaphor," said Frank, but he wouldn't say what kind. "That part's your job," he grinned, and leaned over to put his hat on Gerard's head.

"Frank, I'm busy," said Gerard, and started to take it off, but Frank giggled, "Leave it, you look cute. A little fucking, like, goth paperboy, I mean, paperGIRL pajama model." Gerard took off the hat and threw it at him.

But the next day, after Mikey had just got off the phone with Brian and canceled another show, and Gerard was in a shitty mood, curled up on the sofa in the lounge smoking, he remembered what Frank had said. Not so much because of his pajamas, although he was wearing girls' pajama bottoms that day, but about being cute. He wandered up to the bunks and poked his head down into Frank's. The reading light was on but Frank was asleep, his head turned to the side and his hair tangled all over the pillow, a Batman comic open on his chest. Gerard would've taken his head back out and gone to the kitchen - eventually, anyway - except Frank woke up then anyway, evidently from the sound of him breathing or something.

"Hey," he mumbled, squinting at Gerard. "Is there any coffee?"

"C'mon and I'll make you some," Gerard offered, and Frank rolled sleepily out of bed, jostling against Gerard's shoulder as he pushed past him to the table. They smoked quietly while they drank their coffee. Frank must have realized that Gerard was thinking about something, because he raised his eyebrows a couple of times, but he didn't say anything, just let Gerard twitch and fidget and stew in his own confusion in peace until he finally broke. Which, of course, meant Gerard just burst out with it, in the least smooth proposition in the history of man: "So, like. You wanna fuck me?"

Frank took another drink of coffee and a drag of his cigarette. He studied Gerard calmly through half-lidded eyes. "Would that be weird?"

Gerard frowned, tilting his head. That was a good point. "Welllllll, in a way it's less weird - because I'm a girl right now, right, and in a way it's not really me, and also, fucking a girl, it's not as weird - I mean, for you - but on the other hand, in another, and very profound sense, it is still me, and the fact that it's me but it's not me is also weird."

Frank hmm'd and drained the rest of his coffee. "Yeah, no, I totally get what you're saying."

"Yeah," said Gerard uncomfortably. He tried to take another drag of his cigarette and realized that he had absent-mindedly stubbed it out, so he got a new one and lit it off Frank's.

"But I mean, weird for us..." Frank prompted, looking up and catching Gerard's eye.

Gerard bit his lip. "The best friends thing, yeah? I mean, who would be less weird? I mean, who else am I going to ask, if not this person that already knows you, inside and out, and gets you as a guy."

"Yeah, definitely," Frank said, and then it was quiet for a minute. Gerard tried to concentrate on smoking and not fidget too much, because he could tell it wasn't an uncomfortable silence for Frank; Frank was thinking, but he didn't look distressed, he wasn't weirded out or anything. Which was normal, of course, he knew he could trust Frank to take this the right way. It was just he was kinda hoping he would take it a little faster. Gerard doodled a pattern on the table with his fingertip.

"Well, it's not like it's not the most brilliant idea ever," Frank said finally, and Gerard was so relieved he could have kissed him. Frank was matter-of-fact, and he was grinning slowly, and then it was a whole shit-eating grin and Gerard still could kiss him because he loved that grin. "I mean yeah, I want to fuck you, man, you're hot, it's not like, weird, you know, it's just, the you being a girl thing," and he started laughing a little, "I, seriously, I can't believe you're a girl. You're a hot chick and all, Gee."

Gerard tried to say "I think you're hot too" and also "Really, because I kind of felt like my tits should be bigger or something" at the same time and ended up with a bastard child sentence that made no sense at all, and Frank was laughing too hard to listen anymore, so Gerard leaned across the table to kiss him in irritation and knocked their foreheads together. "Ouch, motherfucker," he muttered, and Frank stood up and dragged him around the table.

"I think pretty much all tits are good," he said conversationally, "and you're kinda small all over, so."

Gerard thought about it and realized that Frank had a point, and by the time he was done deciding that more boobs would have looked weird on the girl he apparently was destined to turn into, Frank had dragged him right up to the bunks. The sound of videogames filtered back from the front lounge, and Gerard stopped with a look at Frank. "All the other guys are on the bus," he said.

"Hey, man, it's not like we're going to have sex in the bunk," said Frank. "At least not on the first date."

Gerard was totally the type to put out on the first date, but whatever. The bunk wasn't his first choice anyway. It was hard on the knees, for one thing. "Oh," he said.

Frank smirked at him, "You sound disappointed."

"No, not really disappointed," Gerard said, "just, you know, a little... the talking about sex had got me thinking about it and I was starting to expect in a way, subconsciously I guess. You could call that disappointed in a way, though, but not, like, upset." He felt kind of warm, actually - even kind of good, and weirdly relaxed, and his stomach - "I think I'm turned on!" Gerard realized.

"That's a good sign," said Frank. "So what, I guess you wanna fool around first, is that what you're saying?"

"No, no, I mean... yeah! Great. What I mean is it feels different... it must be because I'm a chick, man, it's all... tingly." Frank raised an eyebrow. "Tinglier. Hot. It's great." It was great. It felt sort of like he'd been slipped one tiny fragment of a Xanax or something in his coffee, all warm and spreading, but concentrated, well, right, in the mysterious girl parts. Which made sense, he guessed.

"Earth to Gerard?" Frank was sitting inside his bunk now, putting the comic away.

Gerard snapped out of it. "Yeah," he said, and climbed in on top of Frank so fast he almost hit his head on the top bunk, "let's make out."

"Okay," Frank said happily. "I can touch your tits, right?"

"What's the value in making out with a girl who's really a guy if you have to ask that?"

"For the record," Frank breathed under the corner of Gerard's jaw, making goosebumps all down one side of his neck, "I've never actually had to ask a real girl that," and put his hands inside Gerard's hoodie. There was no tshirt underneath it for once, and he made an approving noise and traced around Gerard's neck with his face until his nose was squished against Gerard's chin and he was licking the hollow of Gerard's throat and -

"That's weird," said Gerard breathlessly, and then had to fumble around to grab Frank's hands and stop him from taking them out of his shirt. "No, keep going. They're all... jiggly."

Frank laughed and shifted around somewhere under Gerard, the knees of their jeans scraping together. "You have actually touched a girl before, right, Gee?"

"Shut up," Gerard muttered, squirming into his hands.

"Here, wait," said Frank, and shifted around some more so that this time he actually did hit Gerard's head, but then he got his knee out of Gerard's way, finally, and Gerard managed to squeeze in on top of him and Frank folded his leg around Gerard's leg and kissed him on the mouth, which was nice, even though there was nothing new about it. "Your mouth is totally the same," Frank confirmed, but he wasn't laughing anymore, not really, only smiling, and he dived right back in.

"Yours too," Gerard mumbled, but that was when Frank stuck his tongue down his throat and he stopped talking for a while.

Gerard had always been a fan of kissing, and Frank's kissing was right up there, even when it was sloppy and hurried, or they missed and he got a mouthful of stubble and sweat. There was no stubble today, and no sweat, but Gerard could taste the Frankness of his skin, but just by being a girl - or just by making out in the bunk at the same time, whichever - the kissing had increased by, fuck, a lot of degrees of awesomeness.

Whoever had invented kissing had definitely given girls the sweet end of the deal, Gerard thought. The more he got turned on, the better it felt, even rubbing against Frank. Nothing started to pinch, nothing got uncomfortably tight, and when the seam from his pants dug in at actually felt... nice. Not to mention the tits. Gerard's ex-girlfriends had led him to believe that tits were mainly a source of pain when you got elbowed in them and an instrument of torture when you had to squeeze them into bras. Gerard didn't know anything about bras yet but he was pretty sure this made up for it. Somehow it had never occurred to him that this part of making out was even better for the girl than for the guy. Meanwhile, Frank's toes were stroking a line down the outside of Gerard's leg and it was driving him crazy. "Fuck."

He started trying to push his hoodie out of the way, and Frank groaned and let his head thunk back on the pillow and slid one of his hands around between Gerard's shoulder blades. "No sex in the bunk, remember," he told the bottom of the top bunk, but his eyes were squinched and Gerard had no doubt at all that it cost him something to say that.

"You don't have to take it all the way off!" Gerard argued, and Frank snorted and held him tighter, which prevented him from taking it off himself. "Let me go," he muttered sullenly. "Ray's been showing everyone his tits all week."

"I don't care if you show everybody your tits," said Frank, "but there's really, really, really not room here, or time for that matter, for what I have in mind."

Gerard had to give him credit, he was a slick bastard. And that thing he was doing to Gerard's back was making him tingle all over. "What do you have in mind?" he asked.

Frank smirked and moved his hand again, and whoa, okay, that almost tickled, but in a good way. "Show everyone your tits and I'll tell you." Gerard's scowl must have gotten through to him, though, or maybe it was the way Gerard was squirming around between his thighs, searching for a comfortable position. (They all knew from experience that there wasn't one, but that never stopped anybody from trying. It was one of the ultimate laws of bunks, right up there with the way they always eat one of a pair of earrings if a girl sleeps in them and the way the curtains never malfunction when you aren't jerking off.) "Okay, okay, okay," he said hurriedly, grabbing at Gerard's waist and hip, "okay, let's just... undo the pants, okay?"

"Okay," said Gerard, and kissed him, and let Frank deal with the pants.

So Frank slid his hands under Gerard's jeans, which were tighter in the hips now but noticeably looser in the waist, so he had the button and zipper open in no time and then Gerard was choking on his tongue and trying to hunch his back to get Frank's hand back. "No panties," Frank breathed, combing his fingers through the hair until Gerard grabbed a fistful of his hair (on his head, that is) and bit his tongue, and then he muttered something in Gerard's mouth and stuck his hand the rest of the way in Gerard's pants and... oh. Wow. That was really, really...

Gerard tried to pull his head away to talk, but when he met the smug drugged glitter in Frank's eyes he only managed to make a noise like "Gah?"

"I guess you don't have any panties, huh," Frank mused, and laughed breathlessly at Gerard's panting.

"Fuck you," Gerard muttered, and tried to open his legs more, but there just really wasn't room at all and he only ended up twisting against Frank's hand and then, surprisingly, coming. At least, he thought he was coming.

Okay, he definitely was, but he didn't realize it would be like that.

He couldn't wait to try it with cock.

"I'm just saying... mm," Frank sighed, "I hope you have another pair of clean pants."

"Mmmmm," Gerard agreed, and dropped his head down half on Frank's pillow, half on his neck. It definitely was sweaty this time, but Gerard wasn't going to start caring about that now. He licked experimentally and Frank shuddered a little, and then, as an afterthought, Gerard remembered they were kind of having a conversation. "Depends what you mean by 'clean'," he admitted.

"Ummmm..." said Frank. "Not smelly."

"They aren't very smelly," said Gerard, and buried his nose behind Frank's ear. "I'm too lazy to move, man, so you'd better unzip your own fucking jeans."

"Easier if you weren't lying on my crotch, asshole," Frank joked, but he grabbed Gerard's ass when he went to move - plus he was still kind of drilling a hole in Gerard's thigh - so he definitely didn't mean it.
"Frank," said Gerard, "That's kind of the point. Do I have to give you the talk about the birds and the bees?"

"As much as I would love that, you know, I think I'd settle for a handjob." And by then he had his jeans undone, so Gerard stuck his hand inside them - and that was new, sticking his hand in Frank's pants when they were already unfastened! - and got a handful of cock.

They both sighed, and, although it was a little weird, Gerard realized he could totally come again in, like, five seconds, if anyone wanted to make that happen. It was kind of awesome.

"Well, your hand is the same," Frank said dreamily.

"You were wearing boxers that other time," Gerard reminded him, but Frank just grinned at him and didn't seem to feel like discussing it.

It was okay with Gerard, and it wasn't even like he hadn't given handjobs before because he totally had, although not while he was sober, but the bigger issue was that he was indeed still mostly lying on Frank's crotch, which made it kind of awkward for his wrist. Considering the amount of time he'd been lying there grinding, though, he figured he didn't have very long to wait, and he was right. Frank was biting his lip and thrusting up in Gerard's hand in no time.

Gerard had never watched a guy come while sober either, not counting porno, and it was... even hotter than he thought. Frank was definitely the hottest guy Gerard knew, though - personally, that is - which probably had something to do with it, and besides he was Frank which meant he was actually disgustingly cute grumbling "ugh" and slamming his knee into the side of the bus and scrabbling at the small of Gerard's back with his bitten-down fingernails.

Gerard found a way to grind against Frank's leg without taking his hand away that didn't immediately break his wrist in half, and Frank's thigh found a sweet spot and he almost forgot what he was doing, and then Frank was wrapping his leg around Gerard and coming all over his hand and hoodie and both their jeans. Gerard made a pathetic squeaking noise and rubbed against him and came again, not even five minutes later.

"Wow," said Frank.

"I hope you have another pair of clean pants," said Gerard. Although this was Frank, of course he had another pair of clean pants.

***

Since Mikey'd been on the phone with Alicia most of the time for the past few days, Gerard thought she was up to date with the Wrong Sexual Organs state of affairs on their tourbus of skank right up until he looked up from a cup of coffee and distinctly heard Mikey say on the other side of the table, "I sound funny? Yeah, uh, I guess I might be a little higher, sorry. It's just I turned into a girl." Then there was a little pause and he said "Really... Monday".

Gerard looked up in interest. Mikey didn't look that upset, but he was hunching his shoulder a little more than usual in a guilty way. Alicia wasn't screaming, though, Gerard knew for sure, because he would have heard that. "No, well, he's a girl too," was the next thing that Mikey said. Then, "Pretty much. It didn't hurt or anything... sorry." He lowered his voice to say that he didn't want Alicia to worry, like Gerard wouldn't be able to hear him being embarrassing that way? Gerard rolled his eyes, but Mikey didn't see. His were focused far away, in Girlfriend Land.

"Well, I was just sitting there eating breakfast, actually, cause I kind of thought I was still dreaming or something or, I don't know, it was a side effect of the medication? But then Ray and Bob came in the kitchen and they were pretty freaked... oh, yeah. Frank's the only one who's still a guy... Ray keeps showing us his tits, but there hasn't been any hot girl-on-girl action... oh, um, I didn't think of that," he said, stuttering suddenly.

He went quiet for a little while so Gerard finished his coffee and went looking for cereal and had completely tuned Mikey out by the time he got up and ambled past Gerard, pausing in the door to shove his phone into the side of Gerard's head hard enough to crush his ear. "Hi?"

"Gerard! Long time no see," said Alicia.

"You have no idea," said Gerard, glancing down at his boobs, which made the view of his Day of the Dead shirt somewhat different from normal.

Alicia laughed and got right down to business. "So tell me in your own words what's been going on in that mental asylum you call a tourbus for the past four days?"

"Well, we pretty much woke up on Monday and all of us were girls... except Frank. And um, we canceled a couple of shows... we didn't really want to, but we couldn't really play like this. Actually, Mikey and I look a lot the same, but Ray... yeah... he's really different. He's got really big tits," Gerard explained. "So we've kinda been... "

"Waiting for it to go away on its own?" Alicia suggested in a deceptively ordinary conversational tone. Gerard could tell she was laughing on the inside.

"Well, it's not like we were going to call 911," Gerard said defensively. "I mean, what do we need, an exorcism? I mean, actually that might be what we need, for all I know, but I don't really want to go ask a priest about it... no, we've mostly just been playing videogames and eating pizzas. We tried to write some music but the lyrics weren't really working out. Oh, we did have a zombie marathon, though."

"Right," said Alicia. "So, listen, I'm coming out there. There'd better be a hotel room and a shower for me when I get there. And I don't want to smell any of you."

When Gerard went out into the lounge, Mikey was on the couch watching Bob beat Frank at Guitar Hero and looking uncomfortable. "So... Alicia said..."

"We're getting a hotel," Mikey interrupted.

"She only said we had to have one when she came," Gerard said, "so it's not like we have to leave right now."

"Mm-hmm," said Mikey.

Frank died onscreen and threw his controller into Bob's lap with a pouty "Take your big tits and go home, motherfucker!"

Bob looked up at Gerard, smirking, and said, "But there's no sense putting off the inevitable, right? As long as I don't have to go outside."

"Besides, she'll probably be here tonight," said Mikey. "So, like... does anyone know where our driver is?"

Following Mikey's threat to drive the fucking bus himself, Frank ventured outside in search of the crew, who were probably beginning to suspect he'd killed the rest of them or something and just developed a really huge appetite for pizza.

By dinnertime they had a bunch of rooms and were sitting around the TV in Gerard's discussing what to get on the pizza this time, with the exception of Mikey, the pussy, who had gone to take a shower, and Frank, the freak, who had already taken one. Gerard figured that as long as he had one pair of pants left and remembered to take them off once he was alone with Frank he should be good for another week or two at least.

When the doorbell rang Ray and Bob both slid back towards the wall between the two double beds, like the pizza delivery guy might sneak down the hallway with a camera. "Why don't you get in the closet while you're at it?" said Gerard sarcastically, put on his hoodie, and got up to open it himself.

There was a tall skinny dude in a Pizza Hut hat there stuttering, "Uh - pizza - your pizza - um, veggie, pepperoni and supreme?" Gerard just thanked the guy and handed him a couple of twenties, and he wasn't even surprised when the guy asked for his autograph.

He signed one of the Pizza Hut napkins and it wasn't until he closed the door and Frankie leapt on him, cackling "He didn't even notice the tits!", that Gerard realized anything was wrong. One of the pizzas started to tip off the stack but Frank caught it and passed it to Ray.

"Trust you zombie motherfuckers to look exactly the same as chicks," Bob said in disgust.

"You can see Gerard's breasts when he's not wearing a hoodie," Mikey pointed out.

"Good thing it's so fucking cold in here, then, or that autograph would've been worth a lot more," said Gerard thoughtfully. "Or if he asked for a picture. I probably would've said yes."

"That's when someone would pretend to be dying and I could come get you," said Frank.

"You should be the one that's dying," Bob pointed out.

"You probably already have pneumonia," agreed Mikey, sounding bored. "Gerard, you can give him your hoodie," he added, before stuffing his face with an entire pizza crust.

"No way, you don't know where that's been," said Frank cheerfully.

Everyone laughed except Gerard, who choked and tried to glare at Frank through watering eyes. He wanted to say something like "That's not what you were saying a couple of hours ago", except he wasn't quite sure on the intricacies of post-hook-up etiquette when you threw in the band, the fact that Gerard was now a girl, and their somewhat unsettled plans for more hooking up. And okay, time to eat pizza, he was totally starting to get turned on again. Who said it was hard to get girls hot? Perhaps the problem with Gerard's first girlfriend was just that Gerard was not Frank.

After the pizza was mostly gone Bob and Ray fucked off to shower or something and Mikey, who was already squeaky clean, flung himself on Gerard's spare bed and turned on the TV.

"Move over, fatass," said Frank, shoving him with his knee, "let's check out the pay-per-view while Gee's in the shower."

"Who said I was going to the shower?" said Gerard. He hadn't told them about Alicia.

"Otherwise you can sleep on the couch," Frank grinned.

"Fuck off, it's my room," said Gerard, but he was pretty sure there was a secret message there, and he broke when Frank stuck out the tip of his tongue at him, and retreated into the bathroom to get naked with his girl parts for the first time. He'd actually kind of looked at them and changed clothes and stuff, but there was still something weird about seeing them in the mirror. Gerard honestly couldn't tell if he would think that he was hot or not now, but it wasn't like he was usually called on to judge the naked bodies of slightly chubby female strangers (or well, any female strangers?) like this, so whatever.

Showering was sort of weird and sort of not. Touching himself still mostly felt the same, except when he jiggled his new tits, for instance - who knew they still jiggle when they're so small? - but aside from being in a slightly different configuration he seemed to have the same amount of fat and everything. One weird thing was he thought his legs were shaped wrong - not in a female way, but just like they had more ankle and less calf - but after he stared at them for a minute he couldn't decide if that was an optical illusion or not. Washing with hotel soap was still kind of weirdly squeaky. One good thing was he hadn't been outside in four days so there wasn't as much eyeliner to wash off. Another thing was he thought his ass might actually be smaller, which seemed totally backwards and almost as unfair as the boobs, but then he remembered how his jeans fit and decided he was probably imagining things.

Considering how easy the orgasms had been earlier in the day, it seemed safe to assume he could manage a couple in the shower, especially since he'd been just slightly turned on the entire time he was eating. That part was weird, though - somehow it was a lot weirder looking down over his own white belly and thighs at his own hand - his own recognizable hand and the completely unrecognizable lack of cock. It didn't feel bad or anything; it was nice, but it was nothing like before, and besides, his brother was right out there (not that that had ever bothered him before) and besides, he probably wouldn't have to wait very long before he could get Frank to help.

So Gerard was, somewhat ironically, wearing his turquoise girl pajama pants when Alicia showed up at the door, because they happened to be the cleanest ones in his suitcase. She and Mikey were texting on the cab ride, so he answered the door of course, and there was a little whispering and kissing and Gerard thought probably some semi-surreptitious pseudo-lesbian groping in the doorway before she came the rest of the way into the room and saw Gerard lying on the bed, prevented from getting up to greet her by Frank's head on his stomach. Small as they were, it was impossible to miss the tits like this. Alicia whistled and Frank cracked up, which meant he curled up and turned his face into Gerard's stomach, and that tickled, so pretty soon they were both laughing and Gerard squirmed and shoved Frank off the bed in self-defense.

"I never thought I would say that you look more like a girl, Gerard," she said with a congratulatory air.

Gerard, who had been thinking about this while examining himself in the mirror, had an answer ready. "I think usually it's more like a now you see it now you don't thing, you know? Except for when I had long hair, I mean, the dress was totally fucking convincing then - but recently it depends more on the angle. It was more androgynous than actually completely girl-like, whereas now it's on the girl side of things, with the tits."

"Yeah, the face isn't that different," Alicia agreed.

"That's the funny thing, mine is," Mikey said. "The whole lower half of my jaw, and my mouth, and even my eyebrows, it's all different, but still if you just glance at me nobody seems to notice anything."

"I noticed, but I'm biased," Alicia jumped in, like the sap she was, which led to more whispering and completely unsurreptitious pseudo-lesbian groping. "You have to be looking for it," she added when they came up from sucking face, and then she basically dragged Mikey out of the room with barely time to say goodnight.

"I'll see you at breakfast," she said, "we'll be busy all night having sex, so we'll just get out of your hair now."

"Ew," Gerard muttered.

Frank gave an airy wave and talked over him. "Yeah, don't worry about us, you know how boring lesbian making out is for guys."

"Dude, that's my brother," Gerard protested as they left.

Frank rolled over closer to the headboard and pressed his nose to Gerard's sternum. Through the t-shirt, Gerard could feel him breathing just under the curve of Gerard's left boob.

"Dude," Frank said slowly, "it's not like they were gonna stay," and then he rolled a little further and pressed his mouth where the moist breath had been condensing. The warm tickles of arousal turned hot and heavy and went through Gerard's whole body in the time it took to breathe in and out a couple of times.

He thought he could actually feel the blood rushing, his stomach full of pizza going light and tense, his nipples pushing steadily erect until the fabric of the tshirt felt painfully harsh against them - and that was a new feeling for him. He gasped, and Frank murmured something happy-sounding and nuzzled against the same boob with his whole mouth and nose, and Gerard had no idea what he was saying, but he couldn't imagine how it could be important.

"Breathe," Frank reminded him a second later, and when Gerard did just breathing made him shiver, or more like shudder, actually, like being turned on was halfway to some kind of freakishly pleasant panic attack.

"Take off my shirt," he retorted. His voice was a little hoarse but sounded strangely normal and loud.

Frank crawled up on the bed, smirking happily, and knelt with a knee between Gerard's thighs before sliding both hands under the tshirt onto Gerard's belly - goosebumps sprang up on Gerard's shoulders and it actually kind of tickled, especially when Frank moved his thumbs - but he wasn't really interested in a slow seduction.

Which was good, because Gerard thought it was possible he would somehow accidentally kill himself through lack of oxygen to the brain or heart attack by then. He was already snapping "Hurry up," except it was more whiny than commanding and it hadn't even been five seconds.

Frank laughed, "You could take off your own fucking shirt if you're in such a hurry - no, hold still, lemme do it, it'll be faster." The shirt went somewhere and then he was putting his face in the hollow of Gerard's throat, and his callused hands were snagging on the delicate skin over Gerard's ribs, but thank God, he wasn't trying to play around. One went straight to the boob he'd been breathing on, the nipple so tense it actually hurt, and - the calluses were really good, the little scratches, but Frank's open mouth sliding down to meet his fingertips there, the cool metal of the lip ring pressed between the silky wet hotness of his lips, that was when Gerard completely lost track of time.

"Could your mouth always do that?" Gerard said dazedly, when Frank moved to fumble with his pajama pants, shoving them down his hips while he mouthed and bit gently at Gerard's collarbone.

"Yep, same mouth," Frank murmured. "Lift your fat ass up, please, I still want to try something else with it."

Gerard scrambled out of his pants, and Frank sat up briefly in the V of Gerard's thighs to unzip his jeans and kick them off the bed with his socks and sneakers. "This is kind of surreal," he mused cheerfully. "Don't you think, Gee? I mean, I've sat this close to you a million times and the time I'm getting naked, you're a girl? I think eating you out might be the last thing I thought I would ever do, except I never even thought it at all."

"Yeah, but I've kind of moved past the surreality mood into the oral sex mood," Gerard said pointedly.

"Mmmmmm," said Frank, "Yeah, I know what you mean - I'm definitely, wow, not complaining. Not at all..." his voice trailed away as he kissed along the crease of Gerard's thigh, and Gerard twitched violently. "Mmm," Frank hummed contentedly, "it's weird, you smell different now, girly, but it's still... I think I would have recognized it anyway, it's still like you - " and then he stopped talking and traced a long line with his tongue and moved it and oh, thought Gerard, that must be the clitoris.

He tried to move his hips and couldn't figure out which direction was better and Frank said something and tilted his head, moved his tongue and Gerard guessed that was a finger; it was all so slippery, and wet, he knew that, but that was nothing like feeling the slippery feeling; it really was, if a feeling could be close and impossible to grasp, quick and slick and trembling and so sweet and smooth and easy. It was like the volume turned up to eleven, hot and disconnected, nothing like the focused pulsing of a hard cock.

The finger was callused - it was long, and Gerard could feel the knuckle and the nail and then the next knuckle and he was glad the nail wasn't long, really. Frank said something else, Gerard didn't care what, and licked slowly again, slid his tongue alongside the finger, and...

Gerard forgot how to breathe, forgot about oxygen entirely, forgot about breathing and accidentally being a girl and which way was up. He felt a twitch of orgasm actually in his fucking foot, which would have freaked him out if he were in a less mid-orgasmic mood. And if he'd thought the last one was long, he'd had no idea what it was like to ride the pulses of it around Frank's tongue, still moving. Gerard realized he was talking after a minute, mostly saying "Fuck, Frank, fuck, fuck."

Frank joked, "Okay, hold your horses," and crawled up on his elbows to kiss Gerard with his face still wet with saliva and girl-come (which he was right, tasted girly but weirdly like Gerard's... normal... sweat or whatever). It was salty and kinda dirty and very sexy, although that could have been because he was even more turned on than he'd been before, his body hot and ready, his leg wrapping around Frank's hip and Frank's tongue diving into his mouth, apparently going right after his tonsils, the same as always, so Frank. And when he pulled back Frank's golden-green eyes were wide and sparkling with arousal, his hair tousled; he was kind of heavy, and just a little bony, and still slightly shorter than Gerard, and had slept on top of him so many times that Gerard could feel every place his slightly misshapen girl-body took Frank's weight differently from his regular guy body.

"You sound like you think I don't mean it," Gerard croaked, hitching his leg around Frank's hip again, which was a lot easier than it should have been because his chick spine or chick hips or chick legs - something about the chick setup, anyway - had somehow made him more flexible.

Frank moved his head aside to suck on Gerard's neck and his hand back to Gerard's boob - Gerard arched his back a little automatically, 'cause it was like that felt even better now, holy fuck. "Mm, gimme a sec," Frank mumbled around his mouthful of neck, "gotta get a condom," and bit down for good measure, and flicked his thumbnail over Gerard's other nipple and Gerard briefly thought about giving up complaining while he watched Frank fumble with it.

Then Frank leaned down over him and slid his hand up to the boob and did it again and he said "Motherfucker, fuck me," and Frank giggled and leaned up on his elbows so Gerard could see his flushed face and wide self-satisfied grin and his eyes turning liquid and serious in the instant he shifted his weight above and Gerard tried to lift up to meet him as his cock slid inside, both smooth and wet and painfully tight. It burned a little, like friction or a muscle cramp or - but didn't catch, he pushed through it steadily.

It must be really different, Gerard thought suddenly, being fucked if you were a guy who hadn't been temporarily turned into a girl, maybe better or worse or neither, but definitely different.

Still moving slowly, out now and then back in, Frank whispered, "Gee?" There had been times when Frank was sick and woke up from a nightmare, and whispered his name in that strained voice. There had been times Gerard woke up face down on some stranger's floor, or in some puddle of vomit, with Frank whispering like that, tentative and tense. He didn't stop moving while he waited for Gerard to answer, thank God. He must have realized that it took work to remember how to talk.

"Yeah," Gerard muttered, "yeah, I'm good - go - go -"

Frank leaned closer, and Gerard's spine curved again, his legs coming up the way they'd been trying to fold themselves before, this time with Frank's hand spreading from the inside to the back of his thigh, holding it down, holding his legs open and pushing him down into the bed as he fucked him, his eyes closed and his mouth open, while Gerard looked up at his face helplessly and felt heavy warmth pooling and spreading through his body, like his muscles were melting to the bone, as he came again.

Frank looked like a really hot thing; Frank had a nice face, Gerard had always thought, a beautiful face, and he was the hottest guy Gerard knew, but there was something special about this look of unconscious abandon. He thought it was unconscious, at least, because Frank looked like he was on a drug trip, but then he opened his eyes a little, looked directly at Gerard and bent forward to kiss him, hard but carefully.

"Okay," he whispered in Gerard's mouth.

Gerard wasn't sure if it was a question, but he echoed, "Okay," and Frank caught his breath and tensed and came.

Frank eventually pried himself off of Gerard (there were actual noises involved, and it was a little sticky, with the sweat) and got rid of the condom, like the gentleman he was, so Gerard figured he should do his part by getting the fucking nylon hotel bedspread out of the way by the time he came back. Gerard and hotel bedspreads were not friends; he'd had enough battles with them when he was drunk and they were actually able to outwit him that now, although he could usually find the ends, the antipathy remained. For that matter, they always felt nasty, all slick and sort of plastic, and they looked like shit.

He barely managed to get this one out of the way, because when he sat up and moved his body around he was completely shocked by this tingling feeling of, well, post-orgasmness, except kind of... better, because he didn't feel like he was about to completely lose consciousness or anything, and once again, he realized he could totally come again at least once if he felt like it. So he got distracted, but he did eventually manage to kick the cover off and crawl between the cold sheets.

They didn't stay cold for long, because Frank came back from the bathroom and got in and wrapped himself around Gerard. Gerard wondered briefly if there was something he should say, something important. "So that was sex as a girl," he decided on, because the only alternative that came to mind was "I could probably have another orgasm," and Frank was clearly more tired than him already.

"So that was fucking you as a girl," Frank mumbled back mildly. He didn't really sound ready for a conversation, more like he just wanted Gerard to know he was paying attention.

"Can't do it the other way," Gerard pointed out, giving up on any possibly important conversations.

Frank yawned and buried his face in Gerard's neck, his hair ruffling along Gerard's chin. Gerard thought he might have said something - maybe "Not like this" - but he was mostly asleep, and then he was asleep, and it was forgotten.

***

"So, Alicia, what's the official advice?" said Ray over breakfast in the hotel restaurant.

"Official? What the hell are you talking about?" said Alicia.

"From the World of Girl, he means," Mikey mumbled around a bite of pancake.

Alicia chuckled. "Welcome to the World of Girl, guys," she said, "where we don't actually have any official rules."

"Didn't you come to help us or something?" said Ray. He sounded hopeful and only a little bit genuinely confused.

"I lost the 'spontaneous sex change' chapter of the manual," she said. "Actually I came more to have lesbian sex with Mikey while I could. Although of course, I'm also available to give him moral support or whatever. But I'm not here to talk you assholes through puberty all over again, that's what your parents are for."

Ray was relatively okay with this and mainly just wanted her to fix him so he could walk outside with his girl parts in case of emergency, as it turned out. Alicia seemed to think this could only happen via a trip to the mall, which were the worst words Gerard could have possibly heard.

Gerard's belief that he didn't really need a bra was vindicated by Alicia, "If you want to look like a slob, but what else is new?" And, really, what was? Gerard wanted to look like a slob. Then she had to kill his buzz by adding, "As long as you're not going to be jumping up and down, or walking up and down stairs, or getting cold, or otherwise causing your nipples to unexpectedly turn perky and start hurting -" and okay, Gerard gave in, because he'd already briefly experienced what she was talking about this morning thanks to sitting too close to the air conditioner under the window while he watched Frank get dressed.

"Is there any way I can just make the rest of you buy it for me?" he asked, but he already knew it was a lost cause.

Ray gave Gerard a sarcastic, yet awesomely pleasant deadpan look. "Yeah, I'll just buy an extra and you can have it. After all, they're all the same size, right?"

"That's okay, Gerard, you can have one of mine," said Bob, hunching back over his bacon so his terrifying boobage made a sort of vertical wall between his shoulders and the edge of the table. It was seriously scary. Gerard knew it had been giving him a backache, too. Fucking hardcore.

Gerard flipped him off and said, "Fine."

"Good thing I made you shower," said Frank demurely, and buried his face in his coffee cup. Gerard was relatively certain nobody except him heard the sneaky little "Again" Frank whispered into his coffee. At least he hoped no one else had heard. Gerard picked up his own coffee in confusion and tried to take a drink, only to find that it was empty, but he left his face there for a second anyway. He thought he wasn't blushing, but he couldn't be too sure now that he was a girl. God, what if he was turning red every time he accidentally got turned on? Frank had kind of dragged him into the shower, although he wouldn't have had to as long as he was going to be there too, but it had definitely been his idea. Gerard wasn't sure he'd showered two days in a row before since high school.

After some brief confusion about vehicles and who they could borrow one from without a member of the crew recognizing Bob and Ray or else wondering why Frank, Mikey and Gerard were hanging out with two extremely hot but poorly-dressed chicks, Bob asked the guy at the desk some kind of question and called them a couple of cabs for what turned out to be a drive of like four blocks.

"We could have walked faster," Mikey observed. He'd already borrowed one of Alicia's shirts and they were holding hands so much that it was hard to walk around them and there was a brief traffic jam in the doorway.

"Yeah, baby, don't let the rock star lifestyle get to you," Alicia cooed. "Oh look, Victoria's Secret."

Gerard put on his favorite sunglasses and pretended he didn't know them, until Bob pointed out, "You look exactly like normal with those things on. We're going to be mobbed for autographs."

"I'm just gonna nip into this, um, sports store and buy a baseball hat then," said Gerard sarcastically. "Do you want one too?"

"Get him a, a, fuck, one of those giant football shirts?" said Frank. "It won't have to stretch over the tits."

Meanwhile Gerard could hear Ray saying, "Victoria's Secret?" sort of timidly to Alicia and Mikey.

"Where did you think I shopped?" said Alicia, "Hot Topic Secret?"

It wasn't like Gerard had never seen one before, but he'd never really been forced to look at it. The sign was giant gold letters on white and the windows were full of mannequins in underwear, feathers, and twice life sized posters that looked like the cover of Maxim showing airbrushed identical Barbie models with colored bits of lace on. The inside was sort of like the inside of a department store, but not one like Sears or JC Penney, more one like Macy's or something, with tiny little white tables with tablecloths covered with little rainbow piles of panties and ribbons all arranged in stripes of color. There was more underwear hanging all over the walls and standing around on racks, plus a creepy faint smell of perfume, and it was weirdly dark, like half the lighbulbs in the store were burnt out, or like they thought that underwear, as well as people, looked better in low light. Or maybe it was just the prices that looked better.

"Eighty bucks for that?" muttered Mikey, holding a black and blue lace bra he'd taken off the wall dangling over his hand.

"Rock star," Alicia hissed. "Welcome to Girl World. Quit whining."

She picked out something reassuringly plain-looking that wasn't shiny at all for Gerard and piled a couple of them in his hands with instructions to see which one fit. Turning it over, though, he realized that it actually did have the evil wires he'd often noticed in bras before, just hidden on the back and sewn firmly to a layer of foam. He lurked around until Mikey had finished picking up some more black lace things because he was afraid to go looking for the dressing rooms alone, but once he was back there sealed behind the striped curtain it was surprisingly unpainful - the bras too, for that matter. The only problem was that, as far as he could tell, all of them fit more or less, and he had to take them off and put them back on a few times before he figured out how they were supposed to fit. Also he had to use his hands to squish his unimpressive little medium-sized tits into them, which seemed vaguely kinky. They made his tits look a lot more impressive, though, he had to admit.

He and Mikey were both done in time to come out and see Ray with his hands full of mysterious different-colored things, looking anxious and faintly pissed-off and very determined, and to hear the end of a pep talk Alicia was trying to give Bob. "It would be a lot faster," she said. "And it's not a big deal, it's their job. It's just like a... measuring tape or something," but Bob's arms stayed firmly crossed over his chest.

Frank came up and bounced on his toes as if he'd had an espresso since they saw him last (which he might have, they were in a mall, there were probably two Starbucks in spitting distance). "What are you getting?" he asked. Mikey held up a couple of the black lace things - including the one with blue ribbons, Gerard noticed, but what the hell, rock stars, right? Mikey's taste in underwear seemed a little goth, but maybe that was meant to match his new boots. Gerard wasn't going to ask, anyway, for fear of a TMI answer. "Uh-huh, so what about the second Mr. Way?" said Frank, turning to Gerard.

He was chewing on his lip ring.

Gerard looked down at the bras in his hand and briefly couldn't remember which one of them actually fit. Finally he did a mental walk-through... the white one, that was the one that slid up, and the grey one was the one that was tight - so the pink one, that was the one he was getting. He hadn't even looked at the size yet. "Uh, this one," he said. It was a good thing Alicia had color-coded them.

Gerard was stricken suddenly, because holy shit, here he was buying a bra because he actually had breasts, and this was a little strange. He was still counting on it to go away on its own, but they hadn't had any luck with that yet, so... "God, you think it won't?" he said. But he and Mikey and Frank started looking for some identical ones in the same size. Luckily the store wasn't very big, and they were awkwardly lurking near the door, cracking bad jokes, when Bob and Ray emerged from the back of the store and Alicia made a beeline for Mikey.

"You small-breasted bitches are lucky," she informed him, tucking her arm into his elbow.

Mikey leaned over to mumble something in her ear and Gerard scooted hastily through the door and out of danger of overhearing.

Considering he was now carrying a fairly large pink striped paper bag, Gerard tried to make a break for the door once their entire party was out of danger, but then he heard Mikey behind him going "Um, Gee?" and turned around to see everybody else moving the opposite direction.

"Wasn't that all?" said Gerard desperately. "Don't tell me all you guys suddenly want to go shoe-shopping?"

"You're not the one whose favorite shirt got all stretched out," said Bob. "Or any of your other shirts, I guess your favorite's been dirty for a few months."

"And I want to go to a game store and get that new extension pack for the Sims," said Ray, which seemed like a more reasonable goal, so Gerard followed them deeper into the depths of the mall.

Malls were a seriously uncomfortable place for Gerard. They were sort of obnoxiously clean, and decorated like a giant doctor's office with a fountain and some cars parked in the hallway, and seemed to be trying to enforce conformity on the universe, every kid in the same shoes and clothes, every town with the same identical glob of Sears and Starbucks and Sunglass Hut and Gap and the Disney Store and Hot Topic. Also they were full of noisy people moving in swarms and herds, and huddles and knots of teenagers. You'd think that after writing a song about his irrational teenager-anxiety it would have been in some way purged, but the only result of that was that Gerard didn't have nightmares about that day on the train anymore.

The fact that he was a girl, walking through a mall with four fifths of his band unexpectedly female, plus Alicia, and carrying a giant embarrassing pink bag full of women's underwear packed with honest to god pink striped tissue paper, actually sounded like a nightmare someone might have some time, and Gerard was just surprised that his subconscious had never thought of it before. He wouldn't have been surprised if they went into a fishing supplies store and were mobbed by duck-wielding vampire shoppers and forced to make an escape by go-kart via the movie theatre or something. It might have been an improvement on standing in a women's clothing store surrounded by pastel leather and glittery sunglasses and what seemed like miles of color-sorted round racks of girl clothes.

Gerard tried hiding behind his sunglasses, but he still ended up biting his nails. He was pretty sure he was looking at neon blue pants, yellow pants, and pale green pants all at the same time, and that was just something that he never wanted to happen to him outside of 80s and 90s video footage or a stadium show. "You don't think I have to buy anything, do you?" he asked Mikey.

"I think all the clothes in here are for chicks with big boobs anyway," Mikey soothed.

"If you buy something here, I'll flush your head," said Frank. "But I might buy this belt, what do you think?"

After a while even trying on sunglasses couldn't erase the pain and Gerard, Mikey and Frank took refuge in the hallway under a miniature potted tree. Just like in a doctor's office, people had dropped little scraps of garbage in the dirt around it, even though there was a trashcan two feet away. Gerard was really starting to crave a smoke. He tried to find a way to stand where the pink bag would be hidden by his legs from every angle and then gave up. "I mean, not that you shouldn't because I think it would probably be a smart move to do some laundry, Gee, but since your pants aren't even fitting exactly the same anymore and we are in the mall, maybe you should buy some."

That was about the time that Bob came out of the store with a bag, only they didn't actually realize it was Bob at first because all three of them were totally distracted by his tits. It's not like he'd bought a corset or anything, just a grey t-shirt with a really big V-neck, but there was definitely some cleavage showing and Gerard was guessing he had the bra on now, because wow. The bra and shirt - and tits, credit where credit was due - somehow succeeded in making Bob's kind of cool but slobby baggy cargo pants look deliberately chosen to get that sexy air of a chick dressed in her boyfriend's clothes who might have forgotten some of her underwear underneath.

"I'm ready to buy videogames, how bout you?" said Bob.

"Okay," said Gerard.

"Dude, you're like," said Frank, and did something that was probably supposed to represent Bob's chest before doubling over with his bizarre little giggle.

"...Dude, you're like, twelve?" said Mikey.

"Ohmigod!" said a teenaged girl in a giant black hoodie. "Um, I'm sorry, can I... Gerard? And Mikey and Frank?" She was clinging for courage to the hand of a slightly taller teenaged guy wearing just as much black and identical chucks. "I'm a really big fan."

It was like that endless moment in a horror movie that stretches out because the music's getting really loud and someone's about to die or a hand's about to shoot up out of the grave and grab someone's ankle. All of them were too afraid to glance at Bob, probably. Gerard felt wooden, like a ventriloquist's dummy, as he smiled and thanked her and Frank asked her boyfriend his name and Mikey just kind of stood there. It wasn't until he thought that that Gerard even thought about how all of them except Frank were girls. It was kind of annoying him how he kept forgetting at important moments, but it's not like it was something you usually had to keep track of.

Gerard signed something and Mikey and Frank signed it too and none of them said a word to or about Bob. Then the teenager said, "I like your hair blonde," but didn't ask him why he'd bleached it, thank God, because he was getting close to shooting the next person who asked him that, and the last thing he wanted was to be processed in a police station while he and his brother were the wrong gender.

Besides, he didn't want to shoot their fans, really - the kid obviously had nice taste in music, and he liked her hoodie.

After the fans walked away the four of them sort of looked around at each other in horror for a few seconds again. Not like in a horror movie so much as the much more mundane real life response to horror like when you suddenly accidentally say "shit" and "fuck" in the same sentence in front of your girlfriend's grandma. Gerard covered his face in his hands and thought about a cigarette, Bob started cracking up, and Mikey said faintly, "Did that really just happen?"

They were still laughing and making faces at each other - and debating whether there was time to run back to the sports store and buy them all hats - when Ray came out of the store in a new shirt and said, "What'd I miss?" After Bob's fantastic rack, and the way Ray had already shown everybody his tits like twenty times, it was less spectacularly surprising that he looked like the kind of cool older girl teenaged boys have wet dreams about but never talk to because he could probably break them in half. He was definitely wearing something that was intended as a girl shirt, and it was dark yellow and tshirt-like, and that was as far as Gerard was prepared to think about clothes, although there was no embargo on staring at tits.

"Man, you missed the fan encounter from hell," said Frank, hushed, "these two kids - "

"Great kids - " Gerard interrupted.

"Yeah, nothing wrong with the kids - we autographed the girl's belt - and they just didn't notice -"

Bob broke in, "And I was standing right here," sounding amused.

"What, like Gerard and Mikey?"

"You should've seen!" said Mikey. "They were just acting exactly like normal, but the guy totally saw Gee's tits, though - he stops and does this tiny double take trying not to look like he's looking."

"Good thing you didn't change into the bra," said Ray.

"We should just release a press release and a photo," Frank suggested after a thoughtful few minutes. "It's not like anyone would believe it anyway. They'd think it was to do with the album or some shit."

Which Gerard thought was probably true, but then they found a game store and he spotted the Sims stuff in the window and kind of forgot what he was going to say, besides "Now we have something to do until this is all over with."

Frank wasn't as into the Sims as Gerard, so maybe that was why he was smiling that funny lopsided little smirk, but Gerard didn't think it was just his own dirty mind reading into the look. He didn't know exactly what Frank was thinking, but that was probably good for his resolution not to blush.

***

Gerard's favorite shirt had had mystery spots on it since July, and he was down to zero pairs of clean pajama pants after a pizza accident, so he went with Ray and Frank to a laundromat half a block from their hotel at like midnight, after borrowing a hat from Bob for camouflage.

There wasn't even anyone else in there, but Gerard left the hat on anyway and blissfully lit a cigarette.

"Is this illegal?" said Frank, plucking it from between Gerard's fingers to take a drag.

Gerard shrugged and jumped up to sit on an empty dryer. "Fuck if I know, why should it be? This isn't a fucking restaurant."

Frank leaned against one of Gerard's knees and reached up to hand the cigarette back. "Works for me." He draped himself over the edge of the dryer and put his chin on Gerard's thigh.

"I wonder who'd pick up the most guys if we went to a club like this?" said Ray, who was spread-eagled over a rickety plastic chair in his usual way, except it looked kind of obscene now that he was a totally hot girl.

"I dunno," Gerard mused, "Bob's got a great rack, but he looks shy... probably you."

"Fuck you, I'd pick up more than all of you," Frank giggled.

Gerard rolled his eyes.

"I hate to break this to you guys, but Mikey and Alicia would totally pick up the most," said Bob, who had snuck in with a bag of laundry while they weren't looking. "All they'd have to do would be start making out." All of them had to agree that he was probably right.

When they dragged their bags back into Ray's hotel room (nominated because he had the least dirty laundry and empty pizza boxes on the floor, and Mikey had left a couple of bags of chips and coke there earlier) with half the laundry still wet thanks to the asstastic quality of laundromat dryers everywhere and put the question to Mikey and Alicia, Alicia agreed.

"I don't know, maybe not if you were, like, wearing a bikini," she added, and Bob choked on a Funyun and turned red, so that was decided.

"Just for the record - and I don't mean this in any remotely weird way or anything - if I didn't know you were Bob, I would be completely in favor of you wearing a bikini," Ray pointed out.

"Yeah, Bob, you're hot," Gerard agreed.

Bob was still red. "I - you guys, can we never, ever talk about this again?"

"Besides, you can't wear a bikini to a club," said Mikey. "That would look slutty."

Alicia rolled her eyes. "Which is why he would get the most phone numbers." Bob made a choked groaning noise and tried to crawl under the bed. "But hey, if you don't turn back you guys can dress Frankie in drag and tour as a My Chemical Romance cover band."

There was a moment of silence in respect/awe/horror at this idea. "You know, that would be a really cool cover band," said Gerard.

"Yeah," said Frank, "could I wear my tiara onstage?"

"You can have a million tiaras," Gerard promised.

"Awwww." Frank leaned over and hugged him and then kind of forgot to crawl back out of his lap. The only thing out of the ordinary about that - besides Gerard being a girl - was the way his breasts prickled inside their new bra when Frank's nose brushed his neck.

"Although we'd have to ask the label for permission to play our own songs," said Ray.

"Yeah, we'd probably have to blow someone to get them to say yes," said Bob glumly from the floor by the bed.

"Just don't wear your bikini to the meeting, they might get the wrong idea," Frank snorted into Gerard's shoulder.

"That's okay, we could just tell them to say yes," Mikey pointed out. "It's not like we can't afford the fee or whatever."

Gerard, when he managed to pull together the pieces of his brain scattered by Frank's hand playing with the hem of his tshirt, pointed out that they wouldn't be able to write any new records. "I don't think I could keep my hair white forever, guys."

"Yeah."

"Yeah."

"Yeah."

A glum silence descended on the room broken only by the crunching of Funyuns, Cheez-Its, and Doritos for a minute.

"We really need to turn back into dudes," said Mikey.

"Are we even gonna have a break anymore after we make up for the concerts we canceled?" Bob wondered.

Ray made a face like he'd bitten into a bad apple. "What if one of us gets - like - "

"What?" said Bob.

"Pregnant?" Frank suggested, and Gerard started to freak out trying to remember what he'd read about condom failure rates.

"A period," Ray hissed, and the horrified silence this time was absolute. Even Alicia looked pretty impressed.

After that no one really felt up to any more conversation, so they watched an episode of The Nanny and then found Beetlejuice playing on tv. Frank curled up in Gerard's lap and insisted twice that Gerard wake him up if he fell asleep, but yeah, right. Gerard didn't wake him up even when his arm went numb - except when it was time for the dinner party scene, because it was just wrong to miss that. He even let him sleep through the end, though, and by that time Ray was asleep and the rest of them were pretending not to notice that Mikey and Alicia totally had their hands all up under each other's shirts.

Gerard sort of had his hand inside the collar of Frank's shirt, on the back of his neck, but that was different, he figured. For one thing, Frank was asleep, and for another, most of the places he'd usually put his hands while he watched a movie were full of Frank. Frank's hair was really soft, and the brown roots were starting to grow out. His knee was kind of digging into Gerard, though, so it was a relief to drag him to his feet and down the hall, Frank half-asleep still and murmuring unintelligible sleepy questions in Gerard's shoulder.

Since Frank's room was closer, Gerard dug the keycard out of his pocket and let them both into it - he only remembered to check that the hall was empty when he was halfway inside, but they'd taken three times as long to leave as everyone else, so it was. He wrestled the plasticky bedspread out of the way and dropped Frank on the closest bed before retreating to the bathroom to brush his teeth with Frank's toothbrush, pee sitting down, and other humiliating things like that. Meanwhile he thought about the way everyone had halfway looked at Gerard when they were talking about turning back into guys - maybe not like it was his fault, but like they expected him to have something to say. And hell, maybe it was Gerard's fault. Things like this didn't happen to other bands, right?

It wasn't like Gerard was the world's most successful grown-up. They wrote the music together, they did stuff together, it wasn't like Gerard was used to solving their problems or bossing the others around, but somehow he felt responsible now. He didn't have any ideas. He couldn't even think of anything helpful at all. In comic books they always solved problems like this with time travel or antiposmatron molecule guns or slinging the earth around a black hole or something.

Gerard dropped the bra on the floor and paused before he put his tshirt back on to scratch the pink marks it had left around his ribs. While he was in the bathroom Frank had turned away from the lamp by the bed and crawled under the edge of the bedspread, and Gerard's stomach swooped anxiously and he realized he was really unhappy. Maybe it made sense for this to all be affecting him a little more than it had been, he thought. He looked around for some hotel stationery to try to scribble some lyrics on, but all he could do once he was sitting there with the paper on his knee was sketch Frank's sleeping face under a crooked tiara. He sighed and put it down and wriggled out of his pants, and then, with a shrug, threw his shirt on the floor too and reached for the button on Frank's jeans.

"Mmm, why didn't you wake me?" Frank mumbled, waking up enough to help Gerard undress him.

"I tried, lazy ass," Gerard lied.

Frank smiled up at him, "Liar," and pulled Gerard down on top of him.

"Oof," Gerard said. "Hey, let's get under the blankets this time, okay?"

Frank made a valiant effort to feel Gerard up once they did that, but he broke off from the kiss yawning after a few seconds and dropped his head down on the pillow and kissed Gerard's ear instead.

"That tickles, motherfucker," said Gerard. "Nice try -" okay, really nice - "but maybe you should go to sleep now." It wasn't that Gerard wanted Frank to stop ohGod touching him, because he really, really didn't, but the yawning wasn't really a good sign.

Frank slid his hand over to cup around Gerard's other boob and sort of squeezed it happily, fingertips tickling over the nipple and trailing around to Gerard's sternum. It was too bad he was so sleepy, Gerard thought, except then he yawned himself.

"Let's wake up in the middle of the night and fuck," Frank bargained.

"It's already the middle of the night," said Gerard, and groped Frank's ass a little, since Frank was lying mostly on top of him anyway.

"I'm just trying to use time wisely!" Frank explained. "Look, we've only fucked twice and it's already been five days," and Gerard's stomach swooped again, and not entirely because Frank's thumb was on the inside of his thigh, but a panicked swoop of mingled anxiety and arousal because he wasn't even sure, for a second, that he wanted to turn back into a dude.

"Uh," said Gerard, and slid his legs further apart to give Frank room. Frank breathed on Gerard's earlobe and bit it while he traced what felt like figure eights or possibly hieroglyphics with his thumb and two fingers through Gerard's pubes and on his Scary Girl Parts, because Gerard wasn't really ready to call it either a vagina or a cunt or anything else like that even inside his head, and oh, Frank stopped teasing finally and slid both fingers inside it, whatever it was, slow and wet and Gerard came twice in, like, one minute.

Frank nibbled on his ear a little bit more, and then licked it gently and patted his belly, which made it jiggle just the same as ever.

Gerard giggled incongruously, but Frank just snuggled closer and murmured, "G'night, Gee."

Multiple orgasms notwithstanding, Gerard thought hazily before he fell asleep, he would still rather be a guy in general, if it weren't for Frank. He didn't know when time would be up, and in two days he'd stopped seeing what fucking was like and gone to seeing what fucking Frank, or rather being fucked by Frank, was like, and when Gerard thought about it that was all he'd been interested in from the beginning; it wasn't like he'd wanted to get fucked by anyone else.

Well, shit.

Although he probably wouldn't have passed up the opportunity anyway. In retrospect, it still seemed like an awesome idea - sex with your best friend. As a girl. Especially if your best friend is Frank. There wasn't a flaw in the plan that Gerard could see, and he still had sex to look forward to when he woke up, unless he spontaneously turned back into a guy in the meantime.

It took a while to fall asleep after the little burst of worry brought on by that idea, but Gerard slept like a baby and woke up with morning light sneaking under the curtains, and a quick check confirmed he was still a girl. He stretched a little and rolled over, dislodging Frank's arm from around his waist, and then changed his mind, turned back around and draped his leg over Frank's knees.

At first the knees seemed a little uncomfortable, but he'd almost completely fallen asleep again by the time Frank woke up, and at first when Frank sighed and touched his cheek he was stuck halfway between reality and a dream about shopping for lasagna noodles in a feather boa. Then Frank stretched and Gerard opened his eyes, and Frank grinned at him around a yawn and flicked the tip of his chin. "We were supposed to get up early to have sex."

"You just looked so cute!" said Gerard in his best Alicia voice, and Frank stuck out his tongue and then rolled over on his back and pulled Gerard on top of him. "Um, hi?"

"Good morning," said Frank, running his hands lazily up and down Gerard's back without any apparent ulterior motives.

"Um. I haven't had coffee," Gerard explained. "I can't seem to remember how to talk..."

And Frank's ulterior motives were showing, because he now had both hands full of Gerard's ass and was wriggling under him, settling Gerard's legs outside of his thighs. "That's okay," he soothed, "it means we're doing it right."

Gerard noticed the tiny bits of dim light diffusing into the room had caught on Frank's lip ring, and thinking led to doing, and as he licked Frank's lower lip and caught the ring in his teeth, Gerard thought how nice it really was, actually, to just see Frank's lip ring shining and be able to lean over and kiss him; there was something so great, so completely satisfying about that, even better than having multiple orgasms, or the way Frank touched his boobs. He tangled his hand in Frank's hair and used it to tilt his head back and put his tongue in his mouth, and Frank's mouth opened so familiarly to him, he tilted his head up and sucked on Gerard's tongue, and Gerard thought dizzily how that was even better, knowing how Frank kissed, getting to know that.

Sometime during the kissing Gerard had gone from lazy making out mode to humping Frank's leg mode, with the difference that humping his leg felt a lot better with his Scary Girl Parts. They were both starting to get all sweaty when Frank dropped his head back on the pillow with a little groan and grabbed tight to Gerard's hips. "Better than coffee," he said hoarsely.

Gerard licked his neck in agreement.

"Hey, Gee," Frank said next, and even though he was using a sex voice Gerard could recognize begging. "I got the condom last time and you're on top."

"Fuck," Gerard muttered, "Where are they?"

"I dumped my bag on the floor on the other side of the bed."

So Gerard crawled over the bed onto the cold side of the sheets and stuck his head and arm over the edge to fish through a pile of gas station receipts and movie ticket stubs for a couple of condoms, but it was totally worth getting his ass cold to slide back into Frank's warm lap and wrap his hand around Frank's cock. He took his time putting the condom on, something else he'd never done to someone else sober, and he decided he wanted to squeeze in some more opportunities now. Frank's cock wasn't extremely unusual, but he liked it. He liked it a lot. He liked it even better once he lowered himself down on it and Frank wrapped him in his arms and pulled him down in a slow, hot, dirty kiss, licking the corners of his mouth and rolling his hips.

"Fuck," Gerard said, squeezing Frank's hips with his thighs. "Oh, fuck."

All Frank seemed to be able to come up with in reply was "Ng," and that was before Gerard propped himself up on his hands again and started to move.

The loudest sound in the room was the sound of their bodies moving, sweaty skin sticking and shifting blankets and their panting, and under that the hum of the air conditioner. Gerard shrugged the blanket off his back and leaned over, his hands on Frank's shoulders to support his weight, and somehow got his knees under him though his heart was pounding so fast, his whole body pulsing, begging, faster, Frank's cock shifting slickly in him.

The lazy orgasm of last night was forgotten; he was desperate for more, aching with the sweet, sharp cramp of desire in his belly. When he lifted himself and dropped back down Frank gasped and rose up to meet him and Gerard just wanted to grind down until - well - he'd never really exactly understood the word "cock-hungry" before, and he was starting to think the sound effects in porn were a little more believable, too. He might have made one, even. The first time he came, his thighs actually trembled, and then Frank was pulling him down, unfolding his legs and kissing the tip of his nose and his eyelids and then his mouth and pushing him over on his back.

"That's harder than it looks in porn," Gerard explained, and moaned as Frank, still hard, gave a slow thrust.

"I know," said Frank, and kissed him again.

Gerard forgot about trying to answer that and just arched up into the next thrust, and Frank grabbed his hips again and buried his face in Gerard's neck and came in about a minute. Gerard almost came too, but not quite. He figured he was probably too tired, or else too knocked out from before. He could still feel leftover little sparks of hotness pulsing in his belly and sizzling out along his fingertips.

After Gerard had caught his breath again he lay on his side and pretended not to be staring at Frank, who was flat on his back, eyes closed, sweaty chest rising and falling slowly. Frank was so pretty. And so well-fucked. Apparently, even though he was a chick right now, Gerard was not immune from masculine pride.

"Where's my coffee, bitch?" said Frank, without opening his eyes.

Gerard moved his foot lazily under the covers to kick him. "Make your own coffee, deadbeat."

"I threw away the condom," said Frank hopefully, cracking one eye open. He didn't even have to bother making a puppy face; just thinking about it got Gerard up. He wasn't that tired anyway. He moved the curtains aside a little while he was up, not enough to get in his eyes - just enough to see the coffeemaker on the dresser and a stripe of yellow light on the floor and wall. Frank sat up in bed and produced cigarettes and a lighter from somewhere.

"I've been a girl for like a week now," Gerard remarked as he shook the grounds into the filter. "A school week, anyway."

"And now it's Saturday and you've got a weekend of debauchery ahead?" said Frank earnestly. "Look at you, making breakfast naked. Sex before coffee." He took a long, happy drag from his cigarette, pursed his lips, and blew the smoke at Gerard like he was blowing a kiss.

"Weeeeelll... you know what they used to say in art school," said Gerard, belatedly remembering to plug the coffeemaker in.

"What?"

"Well, just that debauchery is my middle name, of course."

"Oh, that," Frank scoffed. "I knew that. Come here, Gerard Debauchery Arthur, and let me have my wicked Way with you."

Gerard winced. "Dude. Ouch."

Frank giggled. "I know. Come on, I'm not really going to have my wicked way with you. Yet. Have a post-coital cigarette."

Gerard perched on the edge of the bed and let Frank grope his thigh while he smoked. It really was true that cigarettes tasted better after sex, somehow. "So, Frankie," he said after a minute, feeling weirdly heavy. Frank looked up at him, so Gerard reached out and pushed his hair out of his eyes. He wasn't exactly smiling, but his face had that glowy, post-coital, pre-smiling look. He was in a state of smile-readiness. His eyes were twinkling, but that was probably just the sunbeam from the window picking out the gold flecks.

"So, Gerard?"

Gerard briefly forgot what he'd been going to say. "So I, um." Oh, right. "So like. You know?"

"No?"

"I mean. You know. You said - when we were - and I was like, 'That isn't as easy as it looks in porn', and you -"

Frank was still almost-smiling, but it was like the sunbeam moved away from his face without taking any of the light with it. Gerard itched to draw it, maybe some day when he felt really sad that was not today when he just wanted to get back to the happy place again. "Oh," Frank interrupted. "Yeah. I know."

"Is that... is that like an 'Oh, honey, I know' I know or a 'Done that before, been there, bought that tshirt' I know? Or, I dunno, 'Quiet while I'm fucking you' I know?"

Frank did smile at that, and grab Gerard's hand. "Seriously, first of all - really, really don't be quiet when I'm fucking you."

"Okay." Gerard nodded, stupidly. He was still naked on the edge of the bed and his cigarette had burned down. He dropped it in the ashtray still smoking.

"I guess it was a... 'Been there and definitely agree that it's hard, so thank you thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for making it so fucking hot'?"

"Oh," said Gerard. He bit his lip. "Coffee's done." Frank nodded. "I'm gonna - okay." He got up to pour it into styrofoam cups.

"Gee, it's not like I... I wasn't trying to, you know, lie or whatever," Frank said behind him. Gerard almost dripped a drop of precious coffee on the dresser, and set the pot down, anxious at his mistake, before putting sugar in the first cupful. He didn't turn around. "It's not like I'm exactly... I don't just go picking up guys all the time. I mean, as you can see."

"No, Frankie," Gerard said, finally spinning around. "I mean - it's just - I didn't know."

Frank stared at him anxiously; he was sitting up now, not leaning against the pillows anymore. "It's not like - I'm sorry I didn't. But it was mostly in the past already, you know, and I just never really felt like there was something to tell, like a real thing and not just like 'I haven't always been the model of heterosexuality you see before you'. If I talked to anyone, I would have wanted to talk to you. You know?"

Gerard turned around to pour the other cup of coffee, barely seeing anything. It was one of those situations where you go through the whole drive to school and you wake up in the parking lot and realize you can't remember a single moment of the drive, except with making coffee and carrying it over to Frank. He thought about the phrase 'his heart was in his mouth' and thought about drawing it. He wondered whether he felt like his heart was in his mouth, right now. It actually was more like his throat. He wasn't sure if he was more terrified or elated or terrified to be so hopeful, suddenly, because he was, Frank was - and maybe, maybe his time limit was about to be bent.

"Thanks," said Frank, and took his coffee. He leaned over to take a sip, lean muscles moving under tattoos. The sweat had already dried on his skin - Gerard's sweat too, Gerard thought irrationally.

"So," said Gerard, "you've been like hiding a dark homosexual past, and now you're all about the pussy?"

Frank blinked and stared at him. Then he started chuckling and had to actually put his coffee down so he wouldn't spill it. "Sorry, sorry, it's just. You know. Dark homosexual past and also... I've basically been all about the pussy for the last couple of days. Not to, you know, embarrass you or anything... ."

Too late, Gerard was already blushing. "Thanks, asshole," he muttered, and hid behind his coffee.

Frank drank some more coffee too, and leaned forward a little more to look straight in Gerard's eyes. That was what he always did when he was going to make some kind of speech. "This isn't like that. I - God, what am I doing," he sighed, rubbing his forehead. "This isn't because you're a girl, Gerard. I was kinda shocked, you know, but it's not - not because you asked me. It's because you waited until you were a girl to ask me. I never expected - really, really never expected - to have you turn into a girl and suddenly come onto me all, 'Let's fuck, since I'm a girl'. Obviously." He stopped and drank the rest of his coffee - it must've been really hot, Gerard's was still steaming, but he finished the cup as if he were thirsty. "But you're a seriously hot girl, so."

"Um," said Gerard. He could just feel how wide his eyes were. He probably looked like a cartoon character. "Thanks."

Frank smiled, just a little, with one gently curving corner of his tense mouth.

Gerard smiled tentatively back. Then he swallowed and that reminded him to take another drink. "Want some more coffee?" Frank nodded, so he got up to get it and that gave him something to do.

This time when Gerard handed him his coffee, he crawled over Frank's legs and around to sit against the headboard next to him where he could pull the blankets back over his lap and reach over Frank for his own coffee. He snuck a look at Frank, but he was just fiddling with his hands in his lap, picking at his nails.

"You know, I was thinking about this yesterday," Gerard said, "about - uh - stuff, you know, this whole sex thing we've got going, and I realized it was more about you than, you know, sex in general. I think the thing is when you're best friends with someone you sort of find that obscuring all else in regards to them, so that when you're in that situation, or refer to them, you think 'that's my best friend'. But then in some other situation - like for example you find yourself waking up a girl one day - you might notice that you're thinking 'Maybe he'd fuck me', but if it's your best friend in question, then you still think - my best friend would fuck me."

Frank was looking a little away from him at the wall, his feet crossed at the ankle and both hands cradled around his coffee. He nodded, and his eyelashes lowered. Gerard thought he looked tired; he wasn't sure what to do. He took another gulp of coffee, maybe too big, but near the bottom of the cup and not quite steaming hot anymore. It wasn't empty, but he put the cup down on the bedside table, the one closer to him, by the cold side of the bed. Frank lifted his to his lip and sipped delicately at it. Sunlight caught on his lip ring and Gerard felt a sharp pang.

"I've always thought you were the hottest guy I knew," Gerard blurted. Frank turned his head to look at him in surprise. "I've always - " he broke off, confused. "Always."

Frank tilted his head a little and licked his lips. "Gee," he said, and hesitated - "Good." His fingers were smoothing nervously at the sheet in his lap. He stopped and turned one palm up, and set it on the bed next to his leg, no, between their legs. Gerard's throat felt tight, but he abandoned all metaphors about hearts and just put his fucking hand in Frank's.

The long moment dissolved, the background noise of the room came rushing back, and Gerard looked out of the corner of his eye and saw Frank smiling at him and they both picked up their coffee cups - one-handed - and both finished drinking.

He'd kind of been waiting for the desperate, swooping feeling of arousal and excitement and numb, heart-pounding joy in his belly to fade too, but it didn't. When he put the coffee down, he let go of Frank's hand to move closer to him, slid down a little to rest against the pillow and took a deep breath. Frank rested his elbow on Gerard's shoulder and gently touched the edge of his ear, trailed his fingers through Gerard's hair. Gerard took another deep breath and let it out.

"You all right?"

"Fine," said Gerard. "It's like the opposite of a panic attack. Just -" he tilted his head to look up at Frank, and Frank gave him that crooked, slightly dirty smile, and he forgot what he was going to say. He loved that smile. He'd seen that smile before. "Dude," said Gerard, "have we been, like... dating for the last two days?"

"If I refuse to tell you," said Frank, "does that mean neither one of us has to remember our anniversary?"

"I doubt we're going to forget Girl Week, though," Gerard said thoughtfully.

***

Frank didn't interfere with Gerard going to breakfast in the same clothes he'd worn the day before, though he did coax him into the shower again (and make out with him against the wall for fifteen minutes). Gerard even put Bob's hat back on just in case and struck out in search of waffles, wallet and keycard and, this time, a condom in his pocket.

"You look funny," said Ray, who was reading a local newspaper over a mostly-empty plate with crumbs of scrambled egg on it.

"Yeah, where'd you get that ugly hat?" said Bob. He was wearing a black shirt with mysterious gathering in the neck and boob area, so Gerard refrained from telling him it had been given to him by an ugly loser.

"It's not the hat," Frank announced. "What you guys are looking at is moisture. Our boy has bathed." He took a seat at the table with a theatrical flourish that he might have copied from Gerard. Or Brendon Urie.

Gerard ordered waffles and Frank ordered pancakes, and then Mikey and Alicia came and dragged another chair up to the end of the booth, and Mikey squished in next to Frank in a way that put Frank practically in Gerard's lap. Gerard put a hand on his hip just to make sure he didn't fall or anything.

"Sup, Mikey?" said Gerard.

"Morning," Mikey said in his even-quieter-than-usual morning voice, glancing around with a friendly neutral face at all of them.

"You've kinda got bags under your eyes," said Gerard. "Unless you just put on more makeup than usual."

"Nope, he totally does," Alicia interrupted. She made a cat-got-the-cream face. "But it was worth it."

That was verging on TMI, but Gerard laughed. You couldn't help liking Alicia, in spite of the occasional feeling that she was doing you a favor by not kicking your ass. Plus, Gerard couldn't really dislike anyone while his hand was resting on Frank's hip; who could? Gerard probably smiled a tad too much at the waitress when she came by to refill their coffee, but it was nothing he hadn't done to other bearers of coffee before.

"Do I want to know?" Bob asked, grinning. Ray raised the newspaper pointedly in front of his face, and under the table Frank's hand squeezed Gerard's leg gently above the knee.

"Probably not, actually," Alicia admitted. "You'd all think it's too cute."

"Be glad you were spared," said Mikey, with a hint of a smirk. "Let's just say I feel good."

"Yeah, I guess my mission here is pretty much accomplished," Alicia said with satisfaction. "Lesbian sex, check. My man's confident and emotionally balanced again, check. I even bought a bunch of bras for the rest of you guys. That was worth it too," she added. For a moment Gerard wondered if Mikey was wearing one of the goth bras, and then he felt so horrified he almost splashed coffee all over his pancakes.

"Thanks for that," said Bob, "a lot." Polite motherfucker.

"Yeah, thanks, Alicia," chorused the rest of them, looking like losers in comparison.

Ray even put down the newspaper and tried to recover with, "Want some pancakes, guys?"

It turned out they were only there to say hi, though, because they'd already been out and eaten breakfast at McDonald's. Alicia just wanted to make sure the goodness of the Sims was not kept from her when they got around to installing it. Gerard and Ray promised to text her and she and Mikey left, hand in hand. Frank slid over a little so his plate was more in front of him, but not far enough that Gerard couldn't feel his thigh under the table.

Because Ray said he wanted to work on some chords or something with the unmistakable facial expression of a man who wanted to be alone for the sake of his sanity, Gerard and Frank and Bob had a relaxing couple of hours of dicking around with Halo and Final Fantasy for fun. It occurred to Gerard a couple of times that they were wasting potential sex time, particularly when Frank stretched out on the floor and crossed his feet at the ankles and Gerard looked from the tips of his sneakers and up the legs of his ripped jeans all the way to his chin propped in his hand and felt one of those warm little warning blips of arousal. But then again, it was the middle of the fucking day and he didn't actually want to hole up in his room and avoid everyone any more than he already did.

"Are you feeling confident and emotionally balanced?" Bob asked Gerard, who was in danger of losing again but, luckily, didn't really care.

"I don't know," Gerard shrugged. "I mean, I'd kind of like to turn back into guy-me again, but, like, who's ever feeling confident and emotionally balanced? Sometimes I think that's just a myth."

"Yeah." Bob frowned and scratched his no-longer-bearded chin. "I dunno."

Gerard put his controller down. He was totally dead, anyway. "I mean, you just try to feel good, that's what it's about, trying to be in an okay place so you can do something that matters, you know?"

Frank looked up from the comic he was reading and smiled. "Is it my turn to beat Bob?"

"Well, I think it's your turn to be beaten by me, if that's what you mean," said Bob.

Frank leaned over Gerard's shoulder and reached for the controller, hooking his chin on Gerard's collarbone as he did and pressing briefly up against his back. Gerard shifted automatically to allow himself to be leaned on, and Frank huffed in annoyance because the controller was too far, breath tickling Gerard's neck, making him jump. He turned and met Frank's eyes, almost going cross-eyed from so close, and Frank laughed a little and dropped his hand onto Gerard's leg. Frank was always cold, but he generated a lot of heat, and Gerard couldn't help basking a little in the cuddling.

"Hey, excuse me, Gerard, over here," Frank said, as if their noses weren't separated by three inches of air, "if you could, would you see if you can reach that controller for me - yeah, that one right next to your foot? I mean if it's too much trouble or whatever don't worry, I just thought if you didn't mind... "

"Huh," said Gerard. "Yeah, I don't know. I don't want to use up my good deed for the day this early, kind of." And because he was right there he saw immediately how Frank's gaze shifted instantly when he licked his lips. He could even see the little flicker of possessive satisfaction under the arousal in Frank's eyes, or at least, he thought he could...

... and then Bob said, on the other side of him, "You guys are totally fucking now, aren't you!"

They both jumped. Frank fell off of Gerard's shoulder, caught himself with the hand on his thigh, fumbled and ended up on his knees at Gerard's elbow and even closer to in his lap than before. Gerard was just staring at Bob, and watching Frank dazedly out of the corner of his eye. By the time he realized that he should have said something, way too much time had passed.

Bob's eyes were comically round. "Oh God, you're totally fucking. You're not saying anything. Fuck, you are."

Gerard looked at Frank and Frank looked at him. Frank almost shrugged, and stopped, and then when Gerard didn't open his mouth, said, "Okay."

Gerard blinked.

Bob blinked. "Okay?"

"Well... is it okay?" said Gerard, tentatively. "Not that we - you know - "

"We're not going to stop," said Frank firmly. "We didn't even have time to tell yet, Bryar. Jesus, you and your psychic superpowers."

"Stop?" said Bob blankly. "What, why would you? I'm just, uh... would it be creepy or gross if I say congratulations?"

"Too late now, isn't it?" said Frank gleefully.

"Thanks," said Gerard. Although maybe it was a little weird. It wasn't like they'd gotten married.

"Hey, I'll let you win," said Bob.

"Oh, you little shit! No, you won't!" said Frank, snatching the controller, giggling. "Fuck you!"

"Hey, no thanks," said Bob, and all of them cracked up. Gerard vacated the prime tv-front real estate spot to Frank and picked up Bob's comic, which turned out to be Sin City, to his disgust. He'd read it a billion times, but oh well, he fucking loved that shit.

Dwight was just climbing through Shellie's window - and how much did Gerard love that panel? - when a controller clattered to the floor and bounced off the grody hotel carpet while Bob yelped "What the fuck?"

"Holy shit," said Frank, and it was, embarrassingly, only then that it registered he'd felt a weird sensation, sort of like a backwards orgasm without the pleasure muffled through an itch and a muscle spasm.

"What?" said Gerard intelligently, but of course, he had turned back into a guy.

Frank, having finished staring at Bob and his newly-bearded face and lack of tits, spun around and stared at Gerard. "Gee?"

"Yeah," said Gerard, staring up at him blankly, not moving or anything. He didn't feel any different, on the inside or the outside, since he wasn't having sex at the moment - except the boobs were gone, the cock was back, the new jeans were a little looser in the hips. But from the way Frank was staring at him he almost wondered if the magic had gotten it wrong and accidentally taken away his nose or something, but he knew that wasn't really it. He felt it too, not glad to be back, not like he'd known he was gone, but like he'd suddenly realized that he had missed Frank, when all the time he was a chick he hadn't been aware of missing him at all.

"Are you - ?" Frank breathed.

Gerard's stomach could still swoop as a guy, almost exactly the same. He mumbled something stupid and tried to sit up but he was lying on his belly and he almost crushed the comic book instead and was stuck halfway to his knees until Frank grabbed his head in both hands and kissed him.

It was so good. Gerard's stomach wasn't even swooping anymore. It was great, it was comforting, like waking up with Frank touching his cheek.

"Fuck, I'm so glad you got your cock back," Frank whispered, barely moving away, but at that point Bob stopped cracking up and started really, well, laughing alarmingly loud, almost shouting.

"Please, my eyes," said Bob, and then the connecting door rattled and flung open dramatically.

All three of them turned like rabbits in the headlights, but it was only Ray, with his same old guy Ray face again and his red tshirt stretched out from his now-vanished Amazonian tits. Ray was staring right at him. "Uh, guys?" said Ray.

"Oh yeah," said Gerard.

"Yeah," said Frank, "welcome back to the World of Guy. Gerard and I are dating."

"It looks like you're making out," said Ray.

"Well, we were," Gerard admitted. "But we're also dating."

Ray just stood there for a second. He didn't look worried or pissed off or anything. Gerard thought he mainly looked surprised, or in fact, he almost looked completely blank. "Huh," he said finally, and sat down on the end of the bed. "I guess I shouldn't be surprised."

Gerard looked back at Frank. "I shouldn't be surprised either," he realized.

***

More than an hour later, Ray was running through some chords he'd come up with and pieces of the melodies that went along with them, and Gerard was thinking it might be possible to write some kind of lyrics about their experience after all, when Mikey and Alicia knocked on the door and came in with half a box of mini Oreos.

"Sounds good," Alicia nodded to Ray. "Want a cookie?"

"You all turned back into guys too!" said Mikey.

"It was weird, wasn't it?" said Ray.

"Dunno." Mikey munched a handful of mini Oreos. "I was asleep when it happened. Apparently once my insecurity was over and Alicia and I talked it out and - " he coughed. "I knew everything was going to be all right and then I woke up and it was."

"I told you it was your fault," Alicia told him matter-of-factly, taking the box back. "Lesbian sex issues - turning into a girl... coincidence? Yeah, right."

Frank produced the dirty smirk. "Well, thanks, Mikey."

"What, for not accidentally turning you into a girl?"

"No," said Frank, his smile widening to a shit-eating grin.

"For the fact that he's dating Gerard," said Ray.

"You should've seen it," said Bob. "They were making out all over the floor before, it was gross."

"Ew, no I shouldn't," said Mikey reflexively. "Funny," but he glanced at Gerard. Frank put his feet in Gerard's lap and wiggled his toes at Mikey in a little wave.

"Um," said Gerard.

Mikey raised an eyebrow, and Gerard winced a little; Mikey widened his eyes and glanced at Frank, and Gerard said, "Bob guessed. I was gonna tell you first."

Mikey was smiling, though. "Were you holding hands this morning at breakfast?" he said, which was really not at all what Gerard was expecting.

"What?"

"I don't know, I just remembered how you were acting," Mikey shrugged.

"No!" said Gerard.

"It's okay if you were."

"We definitely weren't," said Gerard. "He was just holding my thigh."

Frank smirked lazily and scooted closer. "As if that sounds so much better."

Gerard opened his mouth to say it wasn't like that, but it was pretty much like that, so he shut it again without saying anything.

Gerard finished reading The Big Fat Kill in between installing the new expansion pack and giving occasional input to the ensuing party behind the laptop, where everyone was interested in Sim pets, including Frank when Alicia found a website that said the Sims could turn into werewolves.

He also might have fallen asleep at some point. He opened his eyes and discovered Mikey sitting next to him.

"Hey," said Mikey.

"Hey," said Gerard.

Mikey cut his eyes at Frank and glanced at the floor, making some kind of twisty Mikey face of slight worry and congratulation and affection. "A thing?" he murmured, so quietly Gerard almost didn't hear him. Talking without moving his mouth was one of Mikey's superpowers. If you could take over the world with that and playing the guitar on your head and going for eight months without showering or brushing your hair they'd be fucking set (and hey, it was totally possible, not that he was proud of it, exactly).

"Mm?" said Gerard, almost as quietly, although he wasn't as good at stealth as Mikey. But everyone would know they were talking anyway, even if they couldn't hear anything.

Mikey rolled his eyes and flicked a glance at Frank again and Gerard, mentally stripping away the question sound (which didn't mean a question, it was just how Mikey talked), deciphered it all to mean Frank had a thing for him. Well, yeah -

"Yeah?" said Gerard. When he said it, it actually was a question.

"A while," Mikey mumbled, looking at the turned-in toes of his sneakers stretched out in front of them on the floor.

Gerard's mouth made an "oh" shape and no sound came out, but Mikey saw anyway and gave a little nod.

Gerard squinted at him. If Mikey said that Frank had had a thing for him for a while, Gerard trusted him. It couldn't be something Frank had told him, because Mikey would have done something - hinted something, said something to Gerard - if he had. But Mikey was smart and quiet and watched things, especially Gerard, and he usually knew more about Gerard than Gerard did; and he was good at understanding Frank. Mikey wouldn't say that if he wasn't sure.

And of course, Frank had as good as told Gerard himself, that morning.

Gerard smiled a little. "Yeah. ... You mean?" and Mikey nodded again, deliberately, and shot Gerard a narrow, questioning look. He was worrying again, there, about Gerard or, Gerard kind of thought, about Frank. But he was satisfied when Gerard looked straight back at him, honest.

Then Mikey hugged him and suggested that room service was great if you planned to have sex at dinnertime, because you didn't have to answer the door and pay them right away like you did with a pizza guy.

"Thanks," said Gerard, "and I think that as my brother, Mikey, that right there was more involvement in my sex life than you ever need to have again."

Mikey laughed. "My lips are sealed."

***

Gerard and Frank didn't bother with excuses no one would believe for leaving the party abruptly at dinner time, and they also didn't bother with dinner when they got back to Frank's room. He wasn't even allowed to walk to the bed: as soon as he took a step Frank pulled him back by the wrist, leaned in to him and went on tip-toe to kiss him where he stood. One moment a jumble, a little nervousness and anticipation and confusion in his head; and the next, only Frank's mouth, welcoming and hot and tasting faintly of lunch, Frank's teeth scraping his lower lip.

Gerard usually didn't have the luxury of free hands, no witnesses, no intervening furniture, no inconvenient guitars, when he kissed Frank. He bent his head this time because Frank tugged on the back of his neck, but then the next thing he knew his arms were around Frank's waist, pulling him in tight, so close he was lifted off his feet, with all his weight on Gerard. Frank didn't pause, didn't seem to notice, just pressed his body close. That was a familiar feeling too, one that had been wrong during Girl Week because Gerard's own body had changed. It was right, now.

"I kinda can't believe we stayed in there for like three hours after I turned back," Gerard admitted, moving his mouth away from Frank's, and kind of planning to lick his neck, which was something he'd done a million times before, after all, but somehow he found himself kissing his cheek and chin and jaw instead, scraping his mouth on Frank's five o'clock shadow, nuzzling under his ear. Frank giggled. "Does that tickle?" said Gerard.

"Nah." Frank shook his head a little. His toes were back on the ground now, but at least Gerard could still reach his ear if he bent over a little. "I just can't believe it either."

"Mm." Gerard wasn't touching skin, he realized, but he didn't really want to loosen his grip enough to get Frank's clothes out of the way yet. The truth was, Bob's laughing and Ray bursting in had kinda killed the mood. "If I was still a chick I'd probably still be turned on from back then. It's like being teenaged without the embarrassment, I was turned on for hours."

Frank laughed happily. "I thought you only did that onstage during concerts, Gee." Gerard snorted, but before he even thought of anything to say - it was hard to be witty, everything he was trying to think kept drifting away in favor of thoughts like Frank and cock! - Frank pushed back a little, hands on Gerard's shoulders, and said excitedly, "Oh, can I finally blow you?"

Gerard just stared at him for a second, having trouble accepting that he was real. "Yes?" he said, on some level wondering if it was a trick question, but Frank just grinned, toothy and blinding and self-satisfied, and shoved Gerard towards the bed. Gerard sat ungracefully on the edge and went for his belt buckle and before he'd finished fumbling the button open, Frank was there kneeling between his knees, sticking his hands under Gerard's and pulling down the zipper, somehow without any confusion at all.

"Take these off," said Frank, tugging the sides of the fly back and pausing to caress Gerard's cock with his thumb before he threw off his own shirt and unzipped his pants. He didn't even bother to take them off all the way, just pulled Gerard's over his feet and shoved them out of the way and leaned in, hands on Gerard's thighs, and... kissed the crease of his thigh. His hair brushed against Gerard's cock, which wanted Gerard to know that nobody had done anything nice for it in a week and now would be a good time, please.

"Frank," Gerard said, and his voice came out scratchy and hoarse.

Frank nuzzled the sweaty hollow of Gerard's hip and buried his nose in Gerard's pubes, and rested there for a moment, breathing. Gerard felt his mouth moving and his tongue tracing a line to the tendon on his inner thigh, but he didn't understand anything until Frank tipped his face up a little and arched his eyebrows mischievously. "I missed the sweat," he explained. "I guess I'm just so used to you never bathing, it was a shock to not be able to pick you out in a crowd with my nose - mm," and he nuzzled again and kissed Gerard's balls.

"Was that supposed to sound like a complaint?" Gerard managed to say, although his first try turned into a gasp when Frank wrapped his hand firmly around the base of his cock.

Frank said distractedly, "No way," settled his weight more firmly on his knees, and leaned down and licked a long stripe up from his own thumb to the head of Gerard's cock. "You never forget what cock tastes like," he announced, and did it again, slow but firm and lush, not teasing at all. "God."

"God," Gerard agreed, forcing his scrabbling hands to clutch the blankets instead of Frank's head, until Frank leaned forward and sucked the head into his mouth with a wet popping sound that was probably kind of gross, but which kind of turned Gerard on more. He shifted a little, spreading his legs helplessly, and Frank petted his thigh comfortingly and swirled his tongue and sucked like he was hungry.

Frank was, seriously, not only the hottest guy Gerard knew, but also the hottest thing and the best thing, period, and oh God, he wasn't kidding about the things he could do with his mouth; he knew what he was doing, and he took long licks and pumped his hand slowly and kept moaning. Spit was getting everywhere. It was wonderful.

"Touch my - put your hands in my hair," he rasped, looking up at Gerard when he pulled off, and Gerard did, and his eyes slid closed like Gerard was the one palming his balls and he begged, "Fuck my mouth, okay? Just, slow," and Gerard made that embarrassing squeak again. Because really, Frank.

His hair was warm and silky, tangling satisfyingly around Gerard's fingers, and he didn't jerk or tense when Gerard thrust up into his mouth, just rode with it until Gerard got to that stage of turned-on where it felt like his brain was fizzing out with static, and his whole body was full of overexposed nerves. There must have been some kind of warning sound - no words, he was sure - and Frank pulled back as Gerard came like a motherfucker, like being punched in the face by his own orgasm. "Oh, shit," Gerard mumbled.

"Yeah," Frank agreed, licking his belly. "I think I'm too turned on to take my pants off. Here, move back," and he heaved himself up into Gerard's lap, legs sprawling open on the edge of the bed, and wrapped his arms around Gerard's neck.

"Hey," Gerard said, and tipped his head to try and kiss him. Frank obligingly rested his forehead on Gerard's, and as Gerard already knew, when he was sitting on Gerard's lap, he was just the right height to do that. How many times had they gone cross-eyed staring solemnly into each other's eyes like this? Nobody was cracking up this time, though.

Frank's eyelids were heavy and his cheeks were pink, and he wriggled on Gerard's lap, chafing his cock a little, and hooked a leg around Gerard's waist. It was easy to kiss him like that, and Frank stopped wiggling for a minute to angle his head around to let Gerard in to say hi to the sharp points of his teeth, the little membrane under his tongue, the slippery corners of his mouth that still tasted like Gerard's come. Frank was a dirty kisser, but he was a little distracted now, or just felt lazy, and let Gerard do all the work. It was strangely sweet.

"That was fucking hot," Gerard told him, quietly, and slid a hand between them to wrap around Frank's cock. It was hot and heavy; Frank must have fucking blue balls, that had to be hurting, but he just sighed and took another little gentle kiss.

"It fucking was," he agreed. "I want you to fuck me later," he added.

"Okay," said Gerard. Like he was going to say no to that.

"I want to fuck you too of course, but I don't think I can really - ugh. Harder," he said bossily. It was adorable, but Gerard wasn't even slightly tempted to laugh because it was just way too hot. He tightened his grip and jerked Frank hard, which actually did sort of hurt his wrist, but it was totally worth it, even if he ended up with denim burn on his cock, Gerard thought fervently.

Frank shook his shoulders a little, grabbed tight to the back of Gerard's neck, tossed his head back restlessly and then let it hang forward again, thrusting into Gerard's hand. When his ear was near Gerard's mouth, Gerard nosed under his hair and set his teeth on the edge of it and whispered, "I want you to fuck me too."

"Agh," Frank gasped.

"I kept thinking when you fucked me before - you're so good, Frankie, I kept thinking, what does it feel like - "

Frank said "Gee," and came all over Gerard's hand. He didn't even ride out all the pulses before he collapsed forward, head on Gerard's shoulder, and pressed his mouth against Gerard's neck.

Gerard stroked his back a little, and then, remembering what he'd said back during the blowjob of super hotness, slid his hand up the back of his neck into his hair. Frank hummed under his breath and relaxed a little under Gerard's hand while his breathing started to even out. Gerard had long ago stopped wondering how anyone could be so completely hot and sweetly cute at the same time, but he took the time to notice it, anyway.

After that he spent a little while petting Frank's hair and then getting Frank's pants off and gathering the energy to get up and move around and get under the covers. He had to move around; even doing that he was starting to feel desperate for a cigarette, not jittery, because no one could be jittery so soon after that orgasm. Not exactly anxious, either, just... ruffled, with all these emotions tugged down out of their ordered places in his brain and left in a big stinking pile. His chest felt too small or too big, or something, and when Frank rolled over on top of him and crossed his arms on Gerard's chest just to stare down into his face, all Gerard could do was stare back at him sleepily, his brain chasing in agitated circles because the only words he could come up with for what he was thinking were that Frank coming in Gerard's lap and all over Gerard's hand was the hottest thing he'd ever seen. That didn't do it, though. In Gerard's head it felt like not just a fact but an important truth, a profundity burning its impression into him.

"I need a cigarette," Gerard confessed.

"Be my guest," said Frank, without moving off of Gerard's chest. He seemed to realize that Gerard had no intention of getting up.

"Maybe in a little while," said Gerard. The hand that felt empty and skittish because it didn't have a cigarette in it, the one that wasn't trapped, he slid up out of the blankets and used it to touch one of the tattoos on Frank's shoulder.

"Hm," said Frank, "yeah?"

"You're a really fucking enthusiastic cocksucker, aren't you?" said Gerard, hoping to come around to the profound hotness indirectly.

"I was a little over-ready to suck your particular cock," Frank corrected with a catlike expression of satisfaction. "But, you know, I guess?"

"Oh," said Gerard. "Yeah. You were just..."

"Best blowjob you've ever had?"

"No question of that," said Gerard instantly, without bothering to compare. At least, he'd had an okay number of blowjobs and a few of them had been kind of fantastic, but he'd never felt like that, like he was turned on and coming with his whole body. "Absolutely."

"Fucking right," said Frank, chuckling a little. He set his chin down on his folded hands, and Gerard felt content to just watch him for a while. He was pretty easy on the eyes, after all.

Soon enough Gerard was lulled half to sleep, thinking that if it didn't feel so good there would be something gruesome about love, and that no, actually it was pretty gruesome anyway in an awesome way, it was like having a bizarre craving to taste your own blood so you rip your heart out and lick it, and stuff it back into your chest still beating packed in cotton candy and it feels like sex, but there you are with blood all over, right? Maybe it would make a picture, he thought. It didn't really feel like a song. He felt like he was covered in his own blood in a way - like in a spilling his guts way, basically, and Frank's too. Being there smeared in come and resting together with Frank like this, that was the good part.

Frank had his back, Gerard thought fuzzily, and he was starting to have a dream with some fucking huge guns where Frank might have been turning into a Sims werewolf, when Frank's voice woke him up saying: "Fucking Mikey and his fucking lesbian sex issues, right?" and having a giggle fit.

The curtains were still a little bit open from this morning, Gerard saw when he blinked awake, and there was moonlight coming in, and he and Frank were lying in the circle of thick yellow light from the lamp beside the bed. Frank was starting to get a little bit heavy, but when Gerard shifted and stretched, he slid off to the side and propped his head up on his hand.

"Whatever the fuck that means," Gerard agreed. "If you ask me, neither one of them had much of an issue with it, unless it counts as an issue that you want to have more of it."

Frank giggled again. "That's it exactly, man. My fucking cocksucking issues."

Gerard snorted. "Thank fucking God for your fucking cocksucking issues, Frankie."

"Don't thank God. Thank me," Frank demanded, and Gerard smiled stupidly big (he could feel it) and did. "You're welcome," said Frank. "Do you have any fucking cocksucking issues?"

"I dunno," said Gerard. "I think I might."

Frank rolled over and reached onto the bedside table and lit cigarettes for both of them. He handed one to Gerard and took a long drag of the other himself. "But thank God for fucking Mikey," he said, smiling a little.

"Especially today, man," Gerard agreed, sitting up against the headboard and elbowing the pillow into place behind him. "Do you ever think, I dunno, like the part of you that's in charge, you know, your ego that plays video games and stays clean and puts words together and shit, and makes choices and, like... makes you a dude, is a little part, and the id, the part that's all about the sex and food and emotions and shit and isn't really a dude or a chick at all is always trying to beat him up?"

Frank blew a long breath out his nose. "Sure, all the time," he said.

"Sometimes you just have to get beaten up, I think," said Gerard.

"Or in my case, beat yourself up," said Frank, leaning over so his shoulder bumped into Gerard's. "Usually by accident, though."

"It's all beating yourself up -," said Gerard.

"Beating up the little guy," Frank nodded. "I like that. Sometimes you just want to get all fucking bloody a little bit."

He understood. Of course, Frank always seemed to understand, Gerard thought, and the happiness inside got a little overpowering for the little guy for a minute, and he let it. "It doesn't really matter," Gerard agreed, and left his cigarette in his mouth for a second so he could reach out and grab on to Frank's hand. "Your little guy's got my little guy's back."

"I've always got your back, Gee," said Frank peacefully, and squeezed back.

End